The Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) in cooperation with the Royal Malaysian Police (PDRM) continue their crackdown on fake news surrounding the Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) epidemic. On the third day of the operation, the authorities picked up another individual to assist in investigations.
A female bank clerk, aged 28, was detained in Kuantan, Pahang, at 4.00PM earlier today on suspicion of spreading false news about the Novel Coronavirus on Facebook dated 27 January 2020. The suspect’s mobile phone and SIM card, believed to have been used for the crime, have been confiscated.
Since 28 January 2020, the MCMC and PDRM have arrested six individuals suspected to have spread false news about the Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) on social media and messaging platforms. The authorities picked up an individual on the first day and subsequently four more on day two.
Those caught spreading fake news may be prosecuted under Section 505 of the Penal Code, which carries a prison sentence of a maximum of two years or fine, or both.
Offenders can also be charged under Section 233 of the Communication and Multimedia Act (AKM) 1998 which carries a maximum fine of MYR50,000 or imprisonment for up to a year, or both, and shall be liable to a further fine of RM1,000 for every day during which the offence is continued after conviction.
The MCMC and PDRM are actively monitoring the dissemination of false news to ensure harmony and public order.
Members of the public are advised to refer to the official Health Ministry website www.moh.gov.my/ or the World Health Organisation (WHO) (https://www.who.int/) for the latest updates on the 2019-nCoV.
Header image: KKM